Community Cares Program – Pay Forward Kindness Society

The Cause

The Community Cares Program is a collaborative effort modeled after the "Block Parent Program" to provide the unsheltered or those in distress in the Tri-Region area (Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, and Parkland County) safe community spaces to spend time and connect with community supports. Currently, the Tri-Region area does not have a shelter nor afterhours support and therefore rely on local businesses for refuge. Due to the pandemic, many of these locations were closed or had limitations to entry, thus leaving many individuals stranded.

Tri-Region Pay Forward Kindness Society provides care and connection for those in crisis through mobile outreach, a weekly community dinner, and a quaint connection space. They build relationships and walk along side clients in their journey by providing basic needs, connection, and linkage to other health and social services providers. Through the Community Cares program, Tri-Region Pay Forward Kindness Society would work with other local supports to train them in resource navigation as well as provide commonly requested supplies for individuals who are unsheltered or in crisis. Examples of supplies are toiletries, bus tickets, taxi vouchers, laundromat and shower passes, food, coffee cards etc. All participating organizations will have a Community Cares Program window sticker/poster to indicate they are a safe space.

By engaging more community partners, this helps the Society stay in touch with clients throughout their journey, as many clients do not have reliable ways of communication and are typically waiting weeks before they have appointments with professional organizations.

Who Will it Benefit?

This program is aimed towards those that are unsheltered or experiencing crisis in the Tri-Region area. Throughout the last few years, local service providers have been reporting an increasing amount of individuals and families seeking supports. This program will benefit individuals and families in the Tri-Region, as well as service providers and businesses that currently interact with these clients.

Within the Parkland region exists multiple boards and coalitions that link social services and health care that Pay Forward Kindness participates in. Pay Forward Kindness would leverage these relationships to bridge access to supports.